Tuesday, May 17, 2016

What are Your Nonverbal Skills Communicating?

“What’s bothering you, Mary?” “Is something wrong? Can I help you?” “If you need someone to talk to, I’ll be glad to listen.”

These were the kind of comments I received as I was walking around my college campus – many years ago! It was my first introduction to the power of nonverbal communication. Gradually after receiving so many of these kinds of comments, I realized that when I was thinking or concentrating on something, I looked worried, bothered, upset, and troubled. I didn’t feel worried, bothered, upset, and troubled, but that was the message I was sending by the look on my face, the way I walked, and other body language.

All of us communicate very loudly without ever saying a word. Think about it: As soon as you see someone, you start to form a strong impression based on what you see before he or she ever says a word to you.

Often we don’t even realize that we have these nonverbal skills, but they can cause perceptions that are not complimentary. Nervous habits make you appear to lack confidence or be inattentive and take away from your professional image. It’s good to check yourself in these small areas because they become part of your overall image. As we know image equals perception, and perception equals reality. 

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